For most people, coffee is an essential part of their morning routine. Whether you like it warm and roasted or ice cold and brewed, coffee just might be the most important part of your day. But for people with rheumatoid arthritis, caffeine is probably not the best way to start your mornings. So, does this mean that caffeine is bad for rheumatoid arthritis? Or can you drink it either way without a worry? In this blog, you will find the answers to all your burning questions and more, so keep on scrolling to learn more.
What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disorder that mainly affects your joints, causing inflammation, pain, and stiffness within them. The immune system mistakenly attacks your healthy joint tissues, leading to the permanent damage of cartilage and bone.
Rheumatoid arthritis can extend beyond joints, as it also affects your organs and tissues. People with rheumatoid arthritis often face symptoms such as swollen joints, exhaustion, and stiffness in muscles.
Moreover, an important aspect of rheumatoid arthritis is that it comes in waves. That is to say, the pain and swelling occur during certain flare-ups; it is not always present. However, there is no cause or trigger behind this phenomenon.
Is Caffeine Bad For Rheumatoid Arthritis?
The relationship between caffeine and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a bit more complex than you would imagine. While some studies suggest that coffee has anti-inflammatory properties, others claim that excessive intake could potentially worsen the symptoms. Not to mention, having too much coffee interferes with your sleep, which ultimately impacts your overall well-being and leads to constant flare-ups.
Additionally, coffee can also interact with certain medications used to manage RA. But everyone responds to medications differently, and for some people, caffeine might not make a difference at all. It is better to consult with a professional rheumatologist and ask them for proper screening and evaluation so you can filter your diet. Moderate caffeine consumption is completely okay since it might not adversely affect RA symptoms. However, it is important for you to manage and monitor the symptoms, seeing whether or not coffee causes you harm.
How Much Caffeine is Too Much Caffeine?
There really isn’t a set scale of how much caffeine is okay and how much is bad. This is because everyone reacts to coffee differently and has a separate scale of tolerance. For instance, some people might be extremely sensitive to coffee, whereas others might not react to it at all. Nevertheless, one to two cups of coffee are usually considered to be safe and normal for adults. Anything more than that can give way to caffeine-specific side effects such as jitteriness, upset stomach, racing heart, lack of focus, etc. Always make sure to consult a medical health professional before increasing your caffeine dosage.
Ultimately, caffeine can be bad for rheumatoid arthritis if you have too much of it or if you are sensitive to it. Do not try experimenting with it yourself. Talk to your doctor beforehand and check in with them to see what they say. Plus, if you feel your arthritis flare-ups get worse after caffeine consumption, it may be time to put an end to it. For more queries and concerns on the matter, feel free to contact Zohair Abbas, MD: Rheumatology Care Of North Houston, at (832) 532-9779.